Ford Plans Carbon Fiber Future to Help Shed Up to 750 Pounds Per Car

Ford Plans Carbon Fiber Future to Help Shed Up to 750 Pounds Per Car

Already several years into a switch to more efficient EcoBoost engines, the next big move for the Ford Motor Company in the fight to reach increasingly strict fuel economy targets is to significantly reduce the weight of its vehicles.

To help meet those goals the American automaker has today announced a partnership with Dow Automotive Systems to develop low cost, light weight carbon fiber vehicle components.

The goal, says Ford, is to help shed as much as 750 pounds per vehicle by the end of the decade. While carbon fiber is used by a few smaller automakers or in limited production vehicles, Ford’s plan is to integrate the light-weight yet ultra-strong material into its mainstream volume products.

“There are two ways to reduce energy use in vehicles: improving the conversion efficiency of fuels to motion and reducing the amount of work that powertrains need to do,” said Paul Mascarenas, Ford chief technical officer and VP of Research and Innovation. “Ford is tackling the conversion problem primarily through downsizing engines with EcoBoost and electrification while mass reduction and improved aerodynamics are keys to reducing the workload.”

Reducing weight, says Florian Schattenmann, head of R&D for Dow Automotive Systems, is, “particularly critical to improving the range of plug-in hybrid and battery electric vehicles.”

Ford and Dow will work together to create an affordable way to source carbon fiber as well as a low cost method to integrate it into volume vehicles.

If successful, the use of carbon fiber components on volume cars like the Focus, Fusion and Mustang could happen by the end of the decade.

  • Shed 750 pounds but add 7500 to the already high price

  • Brad

    Mustang high priced? Maybe if you pack it with unneeded gizmos and gadgets but that goes for any car. $24k for 305hp and $40k for 420hp is a great value.

    If we can learn anything from the aviation industry, going carbon fiber won’t cut as much weight as designers might hope. My guess is the 1st gen carbon fiber Mustang might way 100-200lb less. That being said I can’t wait to see what the future brings from Ford.

  • TMiller

    Even 1-200lbs as an initial weight loss plan (lol) would be great. We’re living in an age were most cars gain an average of 2-300lbs per generation change. That’s just plain ridiculous. 

  • Trymydank

    40 grand? Are you kidding me? I got a brand new 420hp stang leather interior and all for right at 30 grand. The mustang is by far the best bang for the buck